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Exercise

Direction To Solve
Directions (Qs. 1 to 15): Read the following passage to answer these questions given below it. Certain words /phrases have been printed in bold to help you locate them while answering some of the questions:

The suicide attacks by militant Palestinian groups killing large numbers of Israeli civilians and the harsh Israeli response, have raised the renewed hopes of peace in the region.  It is Arafat?s leadership and authority that are being severely tested in the latest phase of the west Asian crisis. By accusing the Palestinian Authority (PA) of supporting terrorism by groups, Israel hopes to put pressure on Arafat to act. Arafat, on the other hand, has never looked a less powerful force than he does today. If he acts against the militants and elements in his own Fatah movement sympathetic to them, he risks a Palestinian civil conflict.  But if he chooses to do nothing, he faces erosion of his authority and all claim to a central role in the peace process. Whatever he does, sections of the Palestinians will hold that he has gone too far and Israel that he has not gone for enough. This is, of course, why Arafat has invariably shrunk from hard decision.  He has refrained from curbing the militant groups, explaining his inaction as necessary to maintain Palestinian unity.

The Palestinian leaderships inability to improve economic conditions for its people has been a decisive factor in the erosion of its ability to act. Palestinians in Gaza have targeted the PA as being responsible for their condition. The Militant organizations have capitalized on the PA?s failure to establish a functioning administrative infrastructure by setting up a parallel welfare system with the help of the millions of dollars. Though the Palestinian security forces claim to have arrested more than 100 militants after the suicide bomb attacks in Israel, the other similar militant groups remain defiant, confident of their popular support and of the certainty that in the ultimate analysis the PA leadership will stop short of decisive action against them.

That the militant groups enjoy popular support in Gaza is hardly surprising.  The Gaza Strip today resembles a vast prison camp in which some 1.2 million Palestinians are crammed.  Despite the Oslo Accord, 7000 Israeli settlers still remain in 20 percent of the Gaza’s area and are protected by heavily armed Israeli forces.  With its recent blockade of and extensive incursion into PA controlled territories, the Israeli government has placed the whole civil society in Palestine under siege.  Over 450 NGOs, eight universities and numerous other educational, civic, social, and developmental and health institutions have had their work impeded and their vital services to the population blocked.  An international conference on Israel’s treatment of human rights in West Bank and Gaza, attended by signatories to the 1949 Geneva Conventions, that has opened in Switzerland overriding Israeli and American protests, is expected to censor Israel for its treatment of civilians in the Palestinian territories.

Arafat’s standing among Palestinians rests on the authority conferred on the PA by the international community to represent and speak for the Palestinians.  Even the major militant group has so far never openly challenged Arafat’s leadership. Israel’s latest vicious attacks directed against the PA and Arafat present the international community with the danger that this precarious balance of power in the Palestinian community may be destroyed. Continuance of the Israeli attacks can only further radicalize and harden the attitudes of ordinary Palestinians.  On the other hand, Israeli moves to freeze further expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Gaza and, as soon as security conditions permit it, ease the economic blockade of Palestinian towns? However remote such measures appear just now? Alone can restore the authority of the PA and give it a chance to get a grip on Palestinian militancy. 
1- Which of the following factors have raised the hope for peace in West Asia?

A.  Killings of Israeli civilians
B.  Harsh response of Israelites
C.  Revocation of Oslo Accord 
2- Which of the following explains the lack of action on the part of Palestinian leader?
4- Which of the following words is just opposite in meaning to the word impeded as used in the passage?
5- What does the word overriding mean as used in the passage?
6- Which of the following best describes the meaning of the word challenged as used in the passage?
7- Which of the following is the most similar word as accusing as used in the passage?
8- Which of the following is the expected outcome of International Conference which is in progress in  Switzerland?
9- Which of the following best explains the word vicious as used in the passage?
10- Which of the following best explains the word remote as used in the passage?